PICVD: our unique technology to internally coat hollow bodies

Highlight: Pharmaceutical Packaging Improved by Coating Technology

PICVD (Plasma Impulse CVD) coating technology in the lab (left) and in production (right).
Stringent stability requirements and the development of new diagnostics and drugs increase the demand on pharmaceutical packaging systems. Innovative packaging solutions are needed for drugs that contain potent bio molecules like proteins. SCHOTT has brought coated products to market that are just right for these and many other applications. Plasma Impulse Chemical Vapour Deposition (PICVD) technology is used for thin film deposition in many cases. This technology developed by SCHOTT is unique and a variety of different applications have been commercialized. The PICVD process uses a pulsed plasma in combination with oxygen and a volatile precursor gas to apply an oxide coating inside the container. This process offers advantages for the deposition of functional layers on 3-dimensional substrates, especially the interior deposition of hollow bodies: The importance of using a pulsed plasma is that the precursor gas is exchanged after every pulse to maintain a constant gas concentration near the surface and ensure uniform coating distribution. Coatings on pharmaceutical packaging help to avoid protein interaction with packaging surfaces and protein adsorption and can speed up the formulation process to keep the time to market short. To prevent chemical interaction between the container and its content, a plasma coating technology by which a silicon dioxide layer is applied to the internal container surface is only one solution SCHOTT offers. For yet another application, a hydrophobic coating is deposited on the interior surface of a pharmaceutical package. This layer creates an inner surface that rejects water in order to achieve complete emptying of a liquid product without any residue. The PICVD coating technology makes it possible to improve the barrier properties of plastic materials, not just glass. Different container types i. e. cartridges, syringes and vials can be coated.